Should I use WordPress for my photography business?
Having your own website is crucial to success in the modern business world, and the photography industry is no exception, with a website providing a perfect shop window to showcase photographic work. More people than ever head online to check businesses out before hiring their services.
If you do not have a professional website for your photography business, you cannot be found online and risk missing out on new clients. You’ll also fall behind competitors who do have their own website.
There are some critical decisions to make when creating your own site. One of the most important is which platform your site will be built on. WordPress is one you might have heard of and powers an estimated 64 million websites currently live on the internet.
But what is it, and is it suitable for a photography business to use?
What is WordPress?
In simple terms, it is a content management system (CMS for short) on which websites can be built. First launched in 2003, WordPress gives you a place to create your website and enables it to work. The platform not only allows you to create websites but also gives you the ability to publish/manage content too.
But what are the pros and cons of choosing WordPress?
Pros of WordPress for a photography business
The first thing which attracts most businesses to WordPress is that it’s totally free to download and use. This is naturally very attractive for any photography business which needs a powerful, feature-rich platform to build their site on – but which doesn’t eat into their budget.
Another big plus is that it’s easy to set up and use. Even photographers who know nothing about creating or maintaining a website will find it a breeze. This is down to the intuitive user interface and logical site layout.
What else does WordPress offer?
The key to your photography website standing out from the rest is making it unique. It also helps to make it look ultra-stylish.
WordPress comes pre-loaded with lots of different site templates, which look great. There are also a variety of ways to tweak your site – from background colours to font type, images and more. All this makes customising your site easy and quick.
The last major plus for this platform is the vast array of plugins available to use. These plugins give enhanced functionality to your website and enable you to achieve more with it. From a mailing list plugin to an SEO plugin, this is a top feature with countless useful applications.
What are the downsides?
There is no doubt that this platform is great and one that can work for any photography business. It does however have a few drawbacks to think about.
The major one is that you are responsible for sorting out website hosting. As WordPress is only a system for creating websites and managing content, you need to find somewhere to host it separately.
You would also be responsible for making weekly updates to the site with new content. This might be too time-consuming for some photography business owners.
The last major drawback is that you are in charge of keeping your site secure with no dedicated support. This might not be something you feel comfortable doing.
Are there any alternatives for a photography business website?
It is always worth looking around to see what else is on the market before making a decision. The good news is that there are a few decent alternatives to consider. Wix is a name you may have heard of before and has become a popular platform to create websites recently.
Where Wix scores heavily over WordPress is in the tech support and the hosting their packages come with. This means you do not have to find separate hosting yourself and always have expert advice to hand if required.
Wix does come with some downsides though, including having to sign up to a monthly plan to use it and not having the same range of plugins to customise your site with.
Squarespace is another website builder that has gained lots of attention in recent times. As with Wix, they offer hosting as part of their packages and this is an advantage over WordPress.
Many people find Squarespace simpler to use too. This is naturally great for any photography business new to online marketing.
Showit vs. WordPress
The other major contender is Showit, a website builder targeted more towards creative individuals. This is super easy to use and is a hit with many business owners as a result. The drag and drop interface, for example, makes it fun and fast to create your photography website.
It also comes with a Live chatbox and lots of tutorials to help if you get stuck. It’s true to say though that Showit does not come with as many advanced features as WordPress. It is also not as good for allowing you to tweak SEO settings and make your site more visible to search engines.
Choosing the right platform to host your photography business online is certainly something that needs careful consideration. Hopefully, the above has given you more information about WordPress (and its alternatives) and has left you better placed to decide whether it’s suitable for you.
What are the risks? Can I get insurance?
Owning a website exposes you to cyber risk, particularly if you’re hosting clients’ material and details online. Taking out the right type of specialist insurance is definitely something to prioritise. This will protect your valuable equipment alongside giving you professional indemnity and public liability cover.
If you’d like to arrange a quote with us, get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.